The Soros philanthropic network dumped massive sums of cash into left-of-center Latino advocacy and political mobilization efforts in 2022, according to recently released disclosures.
The Open Society Policy Center, the Foundation to Promote Open Society and the Open Society Institute, all arms of the Soros philanthropic network, poured tens of millions of dollars into left-of-center Latino voter mobilization groups and left-wing Latino advocacy organizations in 2022, an election year while buying up latino media and plotting with Democratic strategists. The multi-million dollar grant deluge came as Democratic support has been declining among Hispanic voters in recent years, suggesting the Soros empire is targeting a key voting block.
The nonprofit Equis Institute and Equis Labs, its 501(c)(4) sister organization, pulled in a combined $35.6 million from Soros’ Foundation to Promote Open Society and Open Society Policy Center. The 2022 grants are a significant increase from the amount of funding Soros’ network allocated the groups in 2021.
Equis Institute was founded in 2019 to “massively increase civic participation among Latinos in this country,” according to its website. The group “seeks to be a resource that develops actionable recommendations for practitioners seeking to engage the Latinx voter.”
Equis Labs, which has greater license to operate politically due to its tax status, produced multiple reports advising Democratic campaigns on how to best appeal to Spanish-speaking or Latino voters, tested the effectiveness of liberal messaging on Hispanics and provided a guide on “counter disinformation” in the Latino community, among other things. The groups, operating in conjunction with one another, aim to mobilize Latinos in the political process.
Hispanic voters have historically favored the Democratic Party, though that longstanding trend appears to be in flux; Democrats won 71% of the Hispanic vote in 2016, but that figure dropped eight points to 63% in 2020, according to the Democratic data firm Catalist.
Republicans see this decline as evidence that the GOP messaging and agenda is appealing to Hispanics.
“It is no surprise donors like George Soros would be nervous about continuing to lose Hispanic voters cycle after cycle,” Republican Sen. Rick Scott, who represents the heavily-Hispanic Florida, told the Daily Caller News Foundation. “Today’s Democrat Party is all in for more government control and a socialist agenda. Many Hispanic voters understand the dangers of socialism from first-hand experiences and that doesn’t bode well for Democrats.”
Democratic support among Hispanics declined even further in 2022, with CNN’s polling indicating that Democrats only secured 60% of their vote during the last midterm cycle.
“Hispanic voters are aspirational,” Scott said. “They want to live in a society with a government that values work, faith, family, a quality education, strong borders, independence and self-determination. The Democrats are out of touch with those values and they know that.”
While Democrats are still winning the majority of Latino voters, Carlos Odio, co-founder of Equis Labs, views the decline in Democratic support among Latinos as significant.
“[Hispanics] don’t have a fully formed Democratic identity,” Odio told Vox. “That vote was borrowed, to some extent. You have a segment of the vote that is as swingy as you get in the current moment.”
George Soros is a major donor to the Democratic Party and expended significant capital to improve the performance of Democrats among Latinos in 2022. Soros spent around $50 million donating to Democratic candidates and committees, as well as Democrat-aligned super PACs, in 2022 alone, according to Politico.
Outside of donating directly to political campaigns and committees, Soros’ network spent millions in 2022 to influence politics by funneling money from his network of nonprofits to other left-wing organizations.
The Soros network’s spending on left-of-center Hispanic advocacy groups, totaling over $60 million, eclipsed the $50 million George Soros spent directly on political campaigns.
Soros’ philanthropic empire focused on both driving up the turnout of Latino voters while also cementing their loyalty to the Democratic party, as is reflected in its grant-making activities.
Voto Latino Action Fund, a group that focuses on registering Latinos to vote and loosening voting laws, received $1.4 million from the Open Society Policy Center in 2022.
While voter mobilization efforts aren’t inherently partisan, they can disproportionately benefit one party over another. High turnout among Latinos was one of the reasons for the Democrats’ better-than-expected 2022 midterm performance, according to Politico.
Top operatives in Soros’ network have indicated in the past that they see mobilizing Hispanics as conducive to getting more Democrats elected.
Then-executive director of Open Society Foundations US programs Tom Perriello met with a Democratic operative in April 2022 to discuss funding a coalition of advocacy groups to boost Latino voter mobilization ahead of the midterm elections, the Messenger reported.
The effort reportedly had a proposed cost of $67 million, but was ultimately nixed.
Some Democratic strategists were critical of the Open Society Foundations’ decision to drop the proposed funding.
“At a time when Latino support for Democrats is waffling why would you sideline these organizations?” one anonymous Democratic strategist asked during an interview with the Messenger.
Giancarlo Sopo, the media strategist who ran Trump’s 2020 Hispanic advertising told the DCNF “it makes sense” that Soros targeted Hispanics.
“Hispanics are the fastest growing demographic in America and increasingly politically independent,” Sopo continued. “Hispanics have continued trending toward the GOP in key states, and I’m sure this makes Democrats uneasy.”
Soros-backed efforts to influence Hispanics, and potentially make them more liberal, have not been constrained to his network’s grant-making activities.
Latino Media Network, a Soros-funded news company led by former Democratic staffers, bought 18 Spanish-language radio stations broadcasting across the country for an estimated $60 million in 2022. The move drew scrutiny from Republican lawmakers, who tried unsuccessfully to block the sale of the stations.
One of the stations purchased by the Soros-backed group, the Miami-based Radio Mambí, previously had a reputation for being conservative. Two hosts quit the station following the buyout, expressing criticism of attempts to move it to the left.
“They did this to silence conservative Hispanic voices but it’s not going to work,” former Radio Mambí host Lourdes Ubieta told the New York Post.
“They want to silence and censor Hispanic conservative voices,” Dania Alexandrino, another host who left Radio Mambí after the Soros-backed acquisition, said. “They treat Hispanics like victims. I wouldn’t take a penny from them. My dignity is not for sale.”
Soros’ philanthropic network spent millions on pushing left-wing advocacy among Latinos, potentially in an effort to solidify them as a Democratic voting bloc.
The Foundation to Promote Open Society, in conjunction with the Open Society Policy Center, also gave $14 million to the Valiente Fund.
Valiente Fund’s mission is to support Latino community organizations with “leadership committed to indigenous sovereignty, anti-racism and feminist economies” in battleground states.
The fund provides select Latino groups with support grants ranging from $50,000 to $100,000 in addition to “a peer-to-peer learning cohort and other capacity-building support, such as tailored coaching and expert-driven technical assistance.”
The Open Society Policy Center gave $1 million to the Latino Victory Project, a group that works to produce more “progressive Latino elected officials.”
National Latina Institute for Reproductive Justice, an organization pushing for greater abortion access among Hispanics, a plurality of whom belong to a faith that opposes abortion, got $1,550,000 from the Foundation to Promote Open Society in 2022.
United We Dream Action, an outfit focused on promoting looser immigration laws and endorsing progressive Democrats, received $3 million from the Open Society Policy Center to support its policy advocacy efforts.
“The left sees everything through the prism of race,” Republican Florida Sen. Marco Rubio told the DCNF. “It blinds them to the real challenges facing people today. That’s the reason blue collar, working class Americans of all backgrounds are moving away from Democrats.”
“Buying up radio stations and funding radical interest groups that work against Americans’ interests aren’t going to reverse that trend,” he added.
Sopo was optimistic that Latinos will continue to move into the Republican column, but stressed that conservatives need to do more to solidify their gains.
“Courting Hispanics—particularly Spanish-dominant Latinos—should be a top priority for Republicans in 2024 and beyond,” he said. “Most of the GOP’s gains have come from English-dominant Hispanics (those who get their news from English-language sources), while Democrats continue winning Spanish-dominant Hispanics by about 40 points.”
Every organization mentioned above, including those in Soros’ philanthropic network, did not respond to the DCNF’s requests for comment. Equis Lab and Equis Institute could not be reached.